Top 5 Hydrosols For Your Health: Essential Water
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For those of us who are not directly involved with homeopathy, holistic healing or alternative forms of medicine, the term ‘hydrosol’ can sound a lot more complex than it really is. To be frightfully honest with you, the first time I heard the word – it brought to mind pictures of ancient, mythical beasts and stories carried down by traditional folklore.
Thankfully, it turned out that this was just my overactive imagination going to work, but it did help to create a fascination about these natural products that drove me to delve into researching hydrosols in an attempt to better understand them.
As with any natural or alternative forms of medicine, it’s always a good idea to do your research before trying anything out. In fact, I would definitely argue the same for conventional pharmaceutical drugs – rather than simply letting your doctor, therapist or GP prescribe them to you.
It was my initial research into the effects of conventional medication (plus my first-hand experience with pharmaceutical drugs over the years) that lead me to include more alternative forms of medicine in my life as a means of treating various health ailments.
By understanding how nature’s own plants and the vast array of phytochemicals that they contain work, you’ll start to realize that a pharmaceutical drug is basically a chemically synthesized or altered version of the natural product.
This means that you can circumnavigate the downsides of using conventional medication (i.e. side-effects, risk of addiction, high costs etc.) while still reaping the health benefits that you need for a clean bill of health.
In reading this, I hope that you will have a clearer understanding of how hydrosols work. For those of us who wish to make the switch to a healthier, more natural lifestyle (and save a ton of money in the process), hydrosols and essential oils are probably the best place to start.
Hydrosols are created in the same process as essential oils and are basically a watered down version of essential oils. This means that there is almost no limit to the variety and amount of hydrosols that are available on the market today due to the fact that they are a by-product of whichever essential oils are being produced at that time.
So, it stands to reason that in order to understand how hydrosols are made, one must first understand how essential oils are produced – as the two are directly linked.
In the creation of essential oils, the organic matter is harvested and placed in a steam distiller which is pumped full of hot steam. In some cases, the vat in which the organic matter is placed contains the boiling water already.
Once the steam is introduced to the vat, it helps to break down the organic matter and releases the essential oils that are contained within the plant matter.
Due to the process of evaporation, this steam extracts the essential oils of the plant and carries them to a separate cooling chamber where the vapor condenses to form droplets that gather at the base of the chamber.
The essential oils that are contained within this liquid tend to sit on top of the water and therefore are separated and removed in order to be sold as pure essential oil. However, the remaining water contains many of the phytochemicals that are contained in the pure extract, they’re just ‘watered down’ a little more.
This water is then bottled and sold separately as hydrosol, hydrolate, herbal water or essential water and is generally considered a lot easier to use than essential oils as well as being more cost-effective. While they might not be as potent as essential oils, they’re still highly effective homeopathic tools and are commonly used in aromatherapy and for personal use.
Peppermint Hydrosol Health Benefits Explained
Peppermint is one of the most common herbs around the world because it is easy to grow, has a delightful odor, a wide variety of medicinal properties and can be used in a lot of different dishes from starters to desserts.
Peppermint hydrosol is no exception here and it has a wide variety of uses that can prove to be really helpful in and around the home as well as in other aspects of your daily life – specifically as a medicinal product.
The top 3 advantages of using peppermint hydrosol, in my opinion, is that it has mild antiseptic, analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties which make it highly effective at treating both topical and internal issues.
This means that you can use the hydrosol to help treat topical skin issues such as keeping minor wounds free of infection and speeding up the healing the process, as well as a natural toner to help remove excess dirt, sebum oil and dead skin cells from the surface of your face – thus promoting a cleaner, smoother complexion overall.
This is largely aided by the hydrosols astringent properties and will help to close your pores, thus preventing dirt and grime from contaminating them.
It also helps to soothe and treat skin disorders such as eczema and psoriasis by hydrating the skin from within and providing long-lasting moisture that keeps the skin from becoming inflamed and irritable.
One of my personal favorite uses for this hydrosol in specific is in my teas or health drinks. It’s a powerful antioxidant which can help to flush toxins from your body, boost your immune system and even acts as a mild decongestant. This means that you can help fight off the winter cold with ease.
I generally add anywhere from 2-3 teaspoons of the stuff to my tea or health shakes. I have found that by using it at least twice a week (if not once a day), my overall health improves quite quickly after or even during an infection or that I get sick less often when doing so.
It’s cheap, readily available and surprisingly effective at maintaining one’s health and is therefore well worth investing in.
Rose Hydrosol Health Benefits Explained
Besides being a powerfully emotive symbol of love, the rose has a wide variety of healing benefits that may surprise you. We are so used to using roses as mere gifts or tokens that many of us have forgotten how powerful they can be when used as medicinal tools. I hope to illustrate just that in this section.
Ironically, one thing that does seem to resonate with the rose on all fronts is the fact that it is not only a symbol of great beauty but can actually be used to help attain that beauty and maintain it when used on a regular basis.
Rose water has a rich amount of vitamin C (which may come as a surprise, as it’s not something that we associate with flowers in general) and this helps to boost the production of collagen which is a protein that prevents the onset of aging in our skin.
It’s never too early to start treating the signs of aging and the earlier you start, the more naturally you’ll age. Rose essential water is perfect for exactly this because it is cheap, safe and effective. On top of this, rose hydrosol also has potent natural antiseptic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties which make it ideal for treating both internal and topical issues.
With regards to topical skin issues, rose hydrosol is particularly effective as a facial toner because it can help to unclog pores by removing excess grime and dirt as well as dead skin cells and oxidized sebum oil thus preventing the formation of blackheads and cystic pimples.
The astringent properties of the hydrosol also help to seal your pores and tighten your skin, giving you a clearer complexion overall and preventing the formation of clogged pores in future when used on a daily basis. Rose hydrosol can also be used to help keep minor wounds free of germs and bacteria and therefore prevent infection.
One of my favorite ways of using this hydrosol, in particular, is in my homemade shampoo recipe. The antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties of the hydrosol help to keep my scalp clean and clear of germs and bacteria while the rich amount of flavonoids and antioxidants help to strengthen my hair from the roots, making them stronger, healthier and even promoting hair growth with consistent use over time.
Plus it’s all natural so won’t dry your hair and scalp out or irritate your scalp in any way. A definite must-have for the beauty conscious among us.
Helichrysum Hydrosol Health Benefits Explained
Helichrysum is one of the lesser known essential oils or hydrosols out there and it’s quite a shame that this amazing natural product doesn’t get more attention because when used correctly, it can most certainly be a highly effective natural remedy for a variety of different health ailments.
Some of the most notable healing properties of helichrysum hydrosol can be linked to its potent natural anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
Due to the hydrosol being somewhat milder than the essential oil in its raw form, it’s perfectly suited for treating both external and internal health issues and is highly effective at doing so – whilst being a safer option than most chemically synthesized products available on the market.
For topical use, helichrysum hydrosol is highly effective at reducing the amount of excess sebaceous oil that oilier skin tends to produce and can, therefore, be used to help regulate and maintain a healthier complexion overall.
I personally enjoy using it as a replacement for the conventional, alcohol-based skin toners out there and find that by blending it with other hydrosols (lavender, peppermint or rose), I get a much more effective result.
Simply blend whichever hydrosols you’d like to use together in the mixture, dab a small amount onto a fresh cotton swab and voila’ – instant, all natural skin toner that’s cheap and effective.
For internal use, I’ve found that by blending a teaspoon of helichrysum hydrosol with a teaspoon of peppermint hydrosol and adding that to a tea blend, I can actively flush toxins out of my body, rejuvenate the senses, help relieve the symptoms of congestion and strengthen my immune system so as to prevent the development of infections in general.
Prevention is always better than the cure – and this is the one thing I think homeopaths, aromatherapists, alternative healers and conventional medical practitioners would all agree on. So by bolstering your immune system and flushing out toxins regularly – you’ll immediately feel and look better and therefore be a lot healthier.
Roman Chamomile Hydrosol Health Benefits Explained
Roman Chamomile is one of the most popular plants, essential oils and hydrosols that are in use today – even though the average consumer is largely unaware of it. This is because it’s extracts are included in a wide variety of products that are in use on a regular basis – from teas to moisturizers, shampoos and conditioners to name but a few.
In fact, roman chamomile oil has been used since the times of the ancient Egyptians (who were the first to actually utilize it for medicinal purposes) and was later popularized and recorded by the ancient Greeks (hence the Latin name).
By looking into the medicinal properties of Roman chamomile, it’s easy for us to see that it’s an incredibly potent natural form of medicine and that it has a wide variety of uses that stretch far beyond what most conventional forms of medicine can offer us in terms of its healing properties.
One of my favorite uses for Roman chamomile hydrosol is to mix it into a tea along with either peppermint or lavender essential oil. Through this method, the roman chamomile hydrosol acts as a potent natural digestive, helping to ease stomach cramps and pains and increase one’s ability to digest food more easily.
In the form of a tea or when added to a steam bath, Roman chamomile also acts as a mild and pleasant sedative which, when inhaled, can help to stimulate the release of a chemical known as dopamine (which is responsible for feelings of happiness among others) as well as another chemical called melatonin.
— Potion World (@PotionWorld) September 26, 2017
This can help you to relax, unwind and ultimately get a good night’s rest which is incredibly important for restoring your body’s natural hormone balance and ensuring that you remain healthy as well as combatting the effects of stress – which can be linked to almost every form of health ailment that occurs today.
I also enjoy using roman chamomile hydrosol to treat minor wounds and sores on the surface of my skin as it’s natural antibacterial and antimicrobial properties help to prevent the onset of inflammation and infection when used early enough.
The natural analgesic properties of the hydrosol are equally effective at relieving the pain associated with wounds and sores and therefore make the healing process much more manageable.
Lavender Hydrosol Health Benefits Explained
While I should add that this list has not been constructed in any form of ranking system, I personally like to think of lavender hydrosol as being my favorite as lavender is something that I’ve grown up with and has always played an important role over the course of my life as both a spiritual tool and a medicinal treatment.
Besides having a heavenly scent that has become popularized in the world of perfumes, soaps, shampoos and beauty products, lavender as a plant, essential oil and hydrosol boasts some pretty potent medicinal properties that can be used to help treat a wide variety of health ailments.
One of the most notable and ultimately effective properties of lavender is its ability to help relieve the symptoms of stress and anxiety. In today’s fast-paced, high-demand lifestyle, it’s easy for us to become consumed by stress and anxiety and not even realize it. Not all forms of stress are the ‘sweaty palms, headache and tension’ type – sometimes stress can be low-grade and underlying.
This usually causes serious hormone imbalances over time and generally leads to a wide variety of health ailments. So by alleviating stress and anxiety regularly, you can prevent the onset of many health issues long before they become a problem.
Lavender also boasts some really potent natural antiseptic properties which make it highly effective for general topical use in terms of preventing the onset of infections, inflammation and general irritation. I enjoy using it in on the surface of my skin to treat minor wounds and sores as well as a natural skin toner and even a light deodorizer (very effective at killing germs related to foul odors).
However, the hydrosol can also be included in a variety of natural DIY shampoo and conditioner recipes that can help to remove grime buildup and bacteria, ultimately preventing inflammation on the scalp and effectively treating dandruff from the ‘root’ of the problem.
It’s natural and non-irritant which means that it’s safe to use on a variety of different hair types and won’t strip your hair of the natural proteins and oils that keep them strong in the process. A definite win-win situation for people with sensitive hair types.
If you’re interested in holistic products and natural forms of medicine, but don’t have the experience to back up your interest as of yet then hydrosols are the perfect place to start as they’re very forgiving, readily available (and therefore quite affordable) and ultimately quite safe.
While I would always recommend using any medication (whether natural or synthetic) with caution at first in order to gain an understanding of how it affects your body (possible allergies, contraindications etc.), natural products like hydrosols are generally more of a safe bet and should always be your first go to in terms of treating health ailments.
I have been using these hydrosols in conjunction with essential oils, natural supplements and a balanced, whole-food diet for 4 years now and have lost weight, improved my health a great deal and finally have the brighter complexion that I have been longing for years while using expensive (and ineffective cosmetics products).
Had I not seen the results for myself, with my own eyes, I never would have believed them to work. So whether you’re a skeptic or not (I’m a skeptic by nature) – I can argue that the proof is in the pudding, or rather the lack of pudding and the addition of pure healthy goodness instead.
Thanks for visiting Maple Holistics! Check out some of our other great features: Elemental Synergies vs. Mixing Elemental Components and Why You Maybe Shouldn’t Make Your Own DIY Shampoo